February2009 Archive

Upgrade to WordPress 2.7.1

2009 Feb 26   category: Technology   author:  

Each visit to the blog over the last few months has reminded me that i wanted to find out how to make our welcome post ‘stick’ to the top of the page.  Poking around the WP admin screens didn’t unearth this functionality and time typically didn’t permit wrestling with their quirky online help search results.  I was reluctant to keep blogging until this had been figured out and so you’ll see there’s been a hiatus.  When i finally gave priority to figuring this out it turned out to be perfect timing.

My recent visit was greeted by a message urging me to upgrade to WP 2.7.1.  I ignored that and delved into the help topics with a search for articles on ‘sticky posts’.  Apparently there are plug-ins that provide this functionality (do i trust plug-ins?) but luckily one article concluded with the comment that this functionality is now native in version 2.7.1.  Aah! time to upgrade to 2.7.1.

It went smoothly!  It helps to have some idea how the blog is configured – there’s the basic software, which will get upgraded, there’s a customized theme, which would need to be preserved and hopefully would work with the new version, and there’s the database of posts etc., which would also need to be preserved.  Knowing this, the upgrade instructions were easy to follow – backup all this just in case; copy these folders; copy only selected contents of these other folders; etc.  Hey presto! it was done and after a little login hesitation we were up and running again.

The upgraded version is definitely better.  A clearer layout in the admin screens was the most obvious improvement – the previous layout had somehow seemed ‘sideways’ for want of a better description.  Of course i quickly looked to find the ‘sticky’ option and after a slightly protracted search found it as a check box under the ‘Visibility’ edit menu.

I was, however, stumped for a longer period by the disappearance of spaces that formerly existed between paragraphs in my posts.  The old posts looked the same as ever until you came to edit them, at which point all those spaces closed up.  This must be their most frequent of upgrade FAQs because the help button available while posting quickly mentions that their ‘wysiwyg’ editor eliminates all html code not compliant with XHTML 1.0, including <br /> tags between paragraphs.  It encourages you to go to your CSS style sheet to format the paragraphs in a more compliant way!  Great! digging back into all that custom coding done when setting up the blog.  It didn’t really take that long to track down what was needed (CSS is great), it was just an unwelcome chore necessary before i could proceed to blogging.

Anyway here we are running 2.7.1.  WordPress software really is neat software that continues to improve with each new version.